The best Big Ten-bound QB/WR duos in the 2023 class
Connections between quarterbacks and receivers are so important, so this week we take a look at which five recruiting classes have the best future QB-WR combos for 2023.
We move on to the Big Ten.
RELATED: Big Ten recruiting rankings | Cosgrove's Big Ten predictions
THIS SERIES: The best ACC-bound QB/WR duos in the 2023 class | Big 12 | SEC
CLASS OF 2023 RANKINGS: Rivals250 | Team | Position | State
CLASS OF 2024 RANKINGS: Rivals250 | Team | Position | State
CLASS OF 2025 RANKINGS: Rivals100
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Ohio State: Brock Glenn and Brandon Inniss
Ohio State has an embarrassment of riches committed at wide receiver with five-stars Carnell Tate and Brandon Inniss and then elite four-stars Noah Rogers and Bryson Rodgers, so you could have your pick here. But Inniss might end up as the best of the bunch and he fits the Buckeyes’ offense so perfectly.
Glenn is a talented quarterback who had decent numbers in his senior season but if and when he wins the starting job in Columbus he’s going to be surrounded by freakish talent across the receiving landscape. Ohio State’s group was phenomenal last year, it’s excellent this year and the tradition should continue with this group.
Penn State: Jaxon Smolik and Carmelo Taylor
Smolik was almost not a member of Penn State’s recruiting class. But when another quarterback flipped to an SEC program, the Nittany Lions targeted the West Des Moines (Iowa) Dowling standout, who had been committed to Tulane, and flipped him.
Penn State could end up with the better deal there because Smolik was really impressive at the Elite 11 this past summer and Taylor is a speedster receiver who can run by anybody and does so in track. Send him deep to pressure defensive backs or get him the ball short and let him run, this combination should be stellar in the coming years.
Nebraska: William Watson and Omarion Miller
Nebraska got a real steal in Miller, who could be one of the best receivers in the 2023 class. Interim coach Mickey Joseph’s recruiting ties to the state of Louisiana definitely helped land the four-star from Vivian (La.) North Caddo, who had been committed to LSU earlier in his recruitment.
Miller totaled 49 catches for 1,183 yards and 15 touchdowns in his senior season as every defense knew the ball was coming his way and nobody really had an answer for him. Watson is undersized but he has a surprisingly big arm and he’s crafty so Nebraska’s new coaching staff should have a fun time figuring out ways to use him in and out of the pocket to deliver the ball.
Minnesota: Drew Viotto and Donielle Hayes
Minnesota runs the ball a whole lot – twice as much as throwing it – but when Mohamed Ibrahim plays on your team, you’re going to get him the ball. Now Viotto coming on board after picking up an offer following an Eastern Michigan commitment means he’s going to be a weapon running the offense and throwing the ball.
And Hayes could be one of the bigger sleeper wide receivers out there. The Pensacola (Fla.) Pine Forest prospect was really impressive at the Rivals Camp Series in New Orleans this past offseason and how he’s leading his undefeated team with 43 catches for 743 yards and nine touchdowns this season. Given the opportunity in Minnesota’s offense, Hayes should shine.
Wisconsin: Cole Lacrue and Collin Dixon
The Badgers are going to run the ball. We all know that. But ever since interim coach Jim Leonhard took over there has been a breath of fresh air on offense and a lot more talent is coming in with Lacrue, who has thrown for 2,114 yards with 24 touchdowns and only four interceptions this season.
Dixon could be one of the biggest sleepers nationally and he could be a tremendous weapon if Wisconsin decides to throw the ball around even more. The Tallmadge, Ohio, three-star standout has caught 88 passes for 1,493 yards and 19 touchdowns this year and has proven to be unstoppable.